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Six “Top 10” placers for Nursing Board are ‘Yolanda’ graduates

ORMOC CITY – Six of the Nursing Board “Top 10” examinees are from Eastern Visayas schools.  This, in spite of their suffering a long interruption in their studies from Typhoon Yolanda, which visited the region on November 8, 2013, just when they were gearing up for graduation.

Three of the six are graduates of the San Lorenzo Ruiz College (SLRC) of Ormoc City, two from St. Scholastica College (SCC) of Tacloban City and one from the University of Eastern Philippines (UEP) in Catarman, Northern Samar.

They are Janelle Ponferada, ranked No. 2 with a percentile score of 86.60, a graduate of SCC which was badly ravaged by Typhoon Yolanda; Cheryl Cubi Ymas of SLRC who ranked 3rd with 86.20%; Kelvin Magdaraog of UEP, at 4th place with 86.0%; Carmel Jane Cabonegro Cobacha and Luiela Peque Arcenal, both of the SLRC who were 7th and 8th, respectively, and Vanessa Laarni Albos, another graduate of the SCC, at 10th place.

There were actually 60 passers who made it to the Top 10. Only one, however, made it to No. 1. He is Elijah Catacutan Legaspi of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila.

Ms Cheryl Cubi Ymas, the No. 3 placer from the SLRC, when reached for her comment she feels “very much blessed, happy, and absolutely surprised with this wonderful gift God has given me.”

She also expressed joy for their “Batch Golf” and other successful passers. “We have been waiting for this to come, after all the years of constant prayers, hard work, and perseverance.”

As for their studies being interrupted by Yolanda and its attendant ills like a long blackout, she said, “It was a tough experience after Yolanda. We had to cope up with the adjustments on our studies, the schedules, the clinical requirements, and the loss and sorrows each one had experienced. By God’s grace, being able to graduate is fulfilling and having passed and making it to the third place is very rewarding. It is a dream come true.”

She also dedicates her success to God and “Mama Mary” and to a classmate, Karessa Saballa, who died from super-typhoon Yolanda, adding she could not have made it “without the support and prayers of my family, classmates and friends, clinical teachers, school, review center, and all those who have believed in my capabilities.” Words are not enough to express my deepest gratitude to all of them. Thank you very much. Their smiles are priceless and precious.”

The same was heard from her classmates Carmel Jane Cobacha and Luiela Peque Arcenal. All three are in high spirits of having a brighter future. All three said they are planning to work abroad, too.

Adelina Y. Larrazabal, Ph.D, school administrator and vice-president for academic affairs of the San Lorenzo Ruiz College here, was also upbeat. “We are all extremely happy with their achievement and of course, proud of the San Lorenzo Ruiz College. I think there were about 26,000 who took the nursing exams and about 15,000 passed and three of our graduates made it to the top 10 nationwide!”

SLRC Nursing Dean Robel L. Sardan, on the other hand, said he had only two words to explain how he feels. “Happy and proud,” he said.

The SLRC is a relatively “new” school. It turned 10 years old in 2014. Owned by the children of Don Poten and Doña Aniceta Larrazabal of this city, SLRC only offered BS Nursing when it opened. Two years later, they began offering BS Medical Technology. In 2009, SLRC embarked on its 3rd course offering, BS Pharmacy.

Since its inception, 563 registered nurses, 35 medical technologists and 7 licensed pharmacists have already graduated from SLRC.

Meanwhile, the Remedios Trinidad Romualdez Medical Foundation in Tacloban City did not have a Top 10-lister this time, but it was one of four schools in the country that posted a 100% passing rate.

Tourism regional director Karen S. Tiopes, in her Facebook account, said that six Eastern Visayas graduates who made it to the top 10 brings honor to te region. “God is good, always. He inspired our youth to rise above the challenges.” By LMJimenea

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